Revisiting The Weekend

Hello friends,

I hope the beginning of this week finds you healthy and happy.

I have been fighting a headache over the weekend that simply will not quit. I went so far as to Google “prolonged headache covid” but the search results tell me I should probably just take an Advil and hydrate.

Roy and I took belated engagement photos yesterday morning. We started at 8am and just 45 minutes later we had to pack it up thanks to the humidity but despite the heat and some natural awkwardness, our photographer captured several sweet moments.

You are invited to match the enthusiasm of our mommas by enjoying the pictures below. I am going to put an ice pack on my head and pretend I’m still enjoying a morning stroll across a beautiful park.

In reality, I’ll be on conference calls.

Such is life!

Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.

Emily Brontë

A Weekend With Beyoncé and Blueberry Pancakes

Beyonce screen shot from Black is King
Black is King, Disney

Hey friends,

What are you watching this weekend?

I’m currently streaming Black is King, Disney’s cinematic collaboration with Beyoncé. I’ll start off by saying if Beyoncé is not already very much your thing, you won’t enjoy it. Because it’s essentially an extended Beyoncé music video with a very loose Lion King narrative.

I liked it in the general sense because I like Beyoncé. But I’m not sure if I would call it a conceptual success. The official description reads, “The film reimagines the lessons from the 2019 blockbuster for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.” The themes explored are more mature in nature and a few scenes might be potentially frightening for younger audiences.

If you’re interested in checking it out, I’d suggest having it on in the background while cleaning or doing laundry but it’s not something you need to sit and watch.

Another album I’ll suggest for your rotation is Taylor Swift’s folklore which I’ve been listening to on repeat since it’s release last week.

Taylor’s latest album is an extremely refreshing departure from the stuff she’s produced over recent years. My favorite Swift album has always been Red and musically, folklore is Red’s understated sister. The remote collaboration between her, Bon Iver and The National’s Aaron Dessner on this album also brought a return to her signature emotive chords and evokes a certain seclusion distinctive of the world it was created in. It’s indulgent.

And here’s my favorite statement on the matter —

There’s also something distinctly nostalgic about a Taylor Swift release given they’ve historically aligned with the beginning of Fall. Although we’re still several weeks out, I’m already excited for it. I’ve also changed my nail color from a summery pink to metallic brown. I’m not kidding around. Although the temperature change in Orlando is insignificant, there’s definitely a shift in the rhythm of everyone’s pace and the seasonal offerings alone are worth daydreaming about. I’m not like, ordering pumpkin spice syrup but I’m ready to make apple pies.

Speaking of, I made blueberry pancakes this morning. They came out more like crepes. I would try a different recipe next time but I highly recommend integrating homemade pancakes into one of your weekends this month.

Image provided by Ala

Although we’ve casually seen immediate family on the occasional basis, we are otherwise staying in and avoiding social gatherings.

These days, a trip to the dog park and ordering take-out after could be the highlight of our week.

But it’s really not so bad that way.

Riyah, August 2020

Sean Feucht Is Killing People

Hi friends,

It appears this corner of the internet is getting more activity than usual. In fact, we had 7,000 new visitors last month alone.

I wish I could believe this is because of my individual charm and command of language. However, the stats suggest that it’s because of the vacuum of information documenting Sean Feucht’s antics. Of which there have been many more since we last spoke on the matter.

It appears that since Feucht’s vulture-like co-opting of the Black Lives Matter momentum in St. Louis, he’s returned to the West Coast to feign persecution by way of public health ordinance.

I find his whole thing glaringly misguided.

He would just be a nuisance to be ignored if he weren’t so exceptionally harmful. His example of defiance is one of ignorance and it mobilizes the followers who subscribe to this entitled hyper-partisan brand of Christian faith.

They will elevate Sean Feucht as a mini-messiah leading them to deliverance from poorly-paid retail employees that are just trying to follow policy and the governors that would rather their constituents not die.

NBC reports that Sean Feucht was the frontman behind Sunday’s revival-like Let Us Worship event which drew approximately 5,000 people to the beach for a concert amidst a pandemic.

Image of crowd at Sean Feucht's worship event, hands raised, no masks
Image from Sean Feucht’s Let Us Worship event

When asked about the man behind these gatherings, the Northern California musician and worship leader responded, “I’m just a nobody trying to tell everybody about somebody, and that’s Jesus. “

The thing is, I don’t buy it.

And I’m making that assumption from what I’ve heard from the other side of this horse’s mouth. Just take a look at his bio. It reeks of a man desperate to be seen.

Someone tell him he needs a comma after author.

And aren’t we all longing to be seen?

Perhaps not as the leader of a movement but by a parent, a lover, a friend, a holy God in the midst of our pain and struggle?

It depresses me to no end that Sean Feucht’s purpose behind these gatherings showcases an unwillingness to see or his neighbor.

California has reported 8,517 deaths as a result of Covid-19 and 477k confirmed cases impacting a disproportionate amount of Black and Latino communities.

Regardless of such, Feucht is taking his sideshow to Portland next month to “change the narrative” after weeks of protests and riots.

Do you see what he’s doing here? He’s essentially the worship-equivalent of an ambulance chaser.

Instead of assuring the Church that Christ is in the room with us when we pray or worship privately in our bedrooms, he’s boasting about the amount of bodies he got to come out to sing on the beach. He’s insisting his followers “hold the line” while the rest of humanity bleeds out.

We don’t have time for persecution theatrics.

Unfortunately, provocateurs of Feucht’s variety believe there’s no such this as bad press. If they’re getting “persecuted” (lol) by bloggers or the mainstream media, they enter the fantasy of a martyr.

Instead, please join me in muting the man altogether.


We May Be In The Upside Down

We May Be In The Upside Down - Among The Olive Trees
Photography by McCall Olsen

Y’all, I am struggling.

I don’t know how else to tell you than very plainly.

But before I get into it, let’s make it clear that I’m not actually struggling.

As I mentioned in my last post, the few things I’m mourning are first-world category privileges. And I’m keenly aware that while I’m grieving reunions and travel, others are grieving the lives of their loved ones. There’s a tension to processing this pandemic and its endless drain while also acknowledging my ongoing employment and good health.

In large part, the security I am experiencing has spurred me to “do my part” by donating to organizations I trust and brainstorming opportunities to feed children who are not in school (more on that to come).

But when I’m dredging through the day-to-day, I honestly feel like one inconvenience short of laying in the fetal position in bed and giving up entirely. This is constant. Each day, I get through what needs to be done and do the laundry and deliver communication collateral, and hell, this week I even pitched article ideas to the likes of Business Insider and The Huffington Post but when I go to bed at night, I know I’m merely cobbling my efforts together while resisting exhaustion and the dread of powerlessness against structures like capitalism, and oh I don’t know, political corruption.

I think Covid-19 took the wind out of all our sails sometimes around early May when it became clear its impact would continue to ripple through the fabric of our lives instead of going away like his Supreme Idiocy said it would.

Speaking of the Spud in Chief, let’s take a look at some of the headlines the USA is making this week:

Trump Wishes Well For Human Trafficker and Long-time Pal Ghislaine Maxwell

USA on Track To Reach 1 Million New Cases of Coronavirus in 2 Weeks

Unidentified Federal Agents Deploy Tear Gas Against Portland Moms in Support of Black Lives Matter

Kanye’s Bid for Presidency is Shadowed by Manic Breakdown

Florida GOP Representative Calls Respected Congresswoman AOC a “F*cking B*tch

I think I need to go lie down after typing these out.

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